Love is a very interesting concept. When two people fall in love it’s a beautiful thing. They confess their undying devotion and love for each other and in a fairytale they’d live happily ever after. But we all know that reality is the furthest thing from a fairytale. More often than not, you’ll find that love mirrors our reality in many cases within biblical stories. The Book of Ruth is a fantastic example that exemplifies the rollercoaster ride that love can take us on.
Naomi and her husband decided to move away from Judah to Moab because of a terrible famine that was hurting their family. The couple’s two sons both married when they moved to Moab. Later tragically, Naomi’s husband and two sons died. Naomi and her daughter-in-law Ruth decided to move back to Bethlehem in Judah because they were heartbroken and lost. Ruth was a Moabite woman and was considered to be a foreigner in Judah, which was a huge deal in their culture at that time. However, Naomi stayed committed to her daughter-in-law and wanted her to follow the God of Israel. God had an amazing plan for Ruth. In a place where many would have thought she’d be ostracized, she found love with a man named Boaz. Ruth and Boaz had a child together and he also took care of Naomi.
Love works in mysterious ways. When you least expect it God provides His children with the things they need in life. For Ruth and Naomi, they needed sovereignty and in essence a fresh start. The Book of Ruth provides many relationship lessons that perpetuate the meaning of true love.
Men and Women should respect each other equally
It doesn’t matter if you’re a male or female, God cares about everyone the same. Even though Ruth wasn’t a Jew and was a Moabite, God didn’t allow those titles to change His love for Ruth. God doesn’t not discriminate and wants His people to have the same viewpoints and understanding.
When entering into a relationship, it’s important that each person understand and respect the other as an equal. The past is the past. Everyone makes mistakes and no one should judge the other for their past actions as a man or woman. Instead couples should have equal say on what happens within a relationship and each voice should hold the same value. Boaz saw the beauty in love and accepted Ruth for who she was. He didn’t judge her past and didn’t penalize her – instead he embraced her past by also providing for Naomi. The love of a man and the love of a woman should always be considered as an equally powerful element.
Little Things Can Accomplish Bigger Plans
God had every intention of Ruth being part of the story for the lineage of Jesus. From the beginning, God had a number of smaller things that needed to happen before the bigger plan could come into fruition. Looking at the bigger picture of the Book of Ruth it’s evident now to see how the famine, Naomi’s relocation to Moab, the return to Bethlehem, Boaz’s blood line, and several other events had a hand in the overall plan for Ruth’s life.
Relationships today are the exact same! Whether you’re going through a break-up or divorce, there is a reason for all of the pain. Even though it may not make complete sense during the time its taking place, it’s important to recognize how God has and continues to change your life on a daily basis with His actions. The saying that there is a light at the end of the tunnel is very true. While you may be going through pain in your current heartbreak, it’s important to realize that this is all for a reason. One day you will find your true love and all of the obstacles that you had to overcome will provide you with the strength for that love to withstand the test of time.
Your Sins Will be Forgiven
Let’s face it, no one is perfect! God has a redeemer for our lives – His name is Jesus Christ. Boaz was a prophetic symbol and his redemptive work lives on even today. Even though we are basically desolate because of our sinful actions, we will all be forgiven and have the opportunity to make our lives better. Naomi was essentially empty and devastated after she lost her husband and sons. She had nowhere to go and yearned to feel complete, so she returned to Judah. God heard her cries and helped her feel complete again.
Every relationship will have its ups and downs because no relationship is perfect. There will be days where you completely mess things up and there will be other days when you succeed in every aspect. Each person within the relationship must understand that everyone has imperfections and it’s imperative that they come to terms with this reality. Couples must balance each other and have a forgiving heart. Once they realize that their significant other doesn’t have bad intentions when they make mistakes, they’ll discover that their relationship will truly prosper.
Grief and Sorrow Cannot Stop Love
Everyone experiences grief and sorrow during their lifetime. Both Naomi and Ruth experienced a great amount of grief, however both prevail – Naomi loses her husband two sons. Despite the pain, Naomi chooses to stand by her daughter-in-law’s side and continue their relationship. There is no bitterness or hostility that shadows over their relationship. They choose to stay together and forge a union.
Through Naomi and Ruth’s mother and daughter-in-law relationship, we’re able to see the heavenly presence that takes place because of love. No matter what devastating situation comes into play, love will conquer all because it is ultimately what brings people together. Through love we learn how to deal with people and how we can become better people within our individual relationships and as an entire society. With love does come heartache – this can is seen through break-ups, divorce, or even death. However, if we look forward and allow our compassion for one another fuel our outlook then we will see how love can flourish.
Thanks and Recognition Go a Long Way
Naomi is the one who sets the tone for her relationship with daughter-in-law Ruth. It’s evident that Naomi understands that God wants her to continue her relationship with Ruth and she expresses these feelings with thanks and recognition. In the Book of Ruth, both Naomi and Ruth are continuously blown away by others who thank and recognize them for what they did rather than what they may have done incorrectly. Naomi even extends thanks and recognition to Ruth for providing her with a beautiful blessing.
We all must understand the importance of being thankful and recognizing others that make a difference within our life – especially within our relationships. Providing your significant other with gratitude will show them that you genuinely care and want to make this relationship last forever. When we’re in a relationship, it’s relatively easy to subconsciously take advantage of your partner because they are with you each day. They see you when you’re good and when you’re bad. No matter what, they see it all and because they are there each day it’s easy to get lost in that safety net. Remember to thank and recognize your partner each day.
Love Looks Different for Every Couple
In the Book of Ruth, Orpah and Ruth chose different paths because that was best for them. Their choices do not mean that one is better than the other. Naomi told the women, “Go back home. Go get married. Go have babies. Be Blessed. God be thanked for your love to me.” Love was different for all of the women involved – Ruth, Orpah and Naomi. In the end, everyone lived their life and love prevailed.
Have you ever heard of the saying, ‘don’t throw rocks at a glass house’? It’s easy to judge others and caste your own beliefs and judgment upon the way they’re living their life; however it’s important to be able to see both sides of the fence. Everyone lives their lives the way it best suits them therefore, others shouldn’t judge love. Just because one couple doesn’t live like another doesn’t mean that they’re any less or more in love than another couple. Everyone loves in a different way and has a unique relationship that cannot be replicated or reproduced. Love is organic and the Book of Ruth is just one of the best examples to portray these ideal.
Great Story of Love
The Book of Ruth provides us with a great story about love. Ruth’s story is one that exemplifies the reality that so many of us are thrown at every day – death, love, heartache, falling into love and even compassion for others that share love. The Book of Ruth is more than just a story about someone whose life was changed by love, but it reveals how love can truly move mountains and change the course of more than just two people that fall in love. The indescribable passion and struggles that accompany love is displayed in the Book of Ruth and these actions personify our own struggles that we come face-to-face with on a daily basis. Everyone can find something relatable in Ruth’s love story.
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